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Archive for December, 2011

Current year and 2012 goals

December 27th, 2011 at 06:56 am

I will keep 2012 down to three main goals because all three are pretty ambitious. I (we)managed to pay about $31,900.00 towards the principal of the mortgage in 2011. I'll have to wait a few more days for the exact amount. As you can see, I still have paying down the mortgage as a goal for 2012. DS#2 is going to tech school next year and we are hoping to pay for that cash and I seriously want to reduce the truck loan one year. As of August of 2012 we will owe two years on this loan. My wish is to have minimum consumer debt (car loans) by the summer of 2013. I managed to accomplish 6 out of the 14 2011 personal and financial goals. I wish I could have done better!

I can't wait to read about your 2012 goals!

Would you have done this?

December 23rd, 2011 at 12:10 pm

In a casual conversation, a relative and I were talking about mortgages. She mentioned that she paid her mortgage payment yesterda (payment was due December 1st). She casually mentioned that she could not pay on time because she needed the money to go Christmas shopping. I know that gift giving is very nice, but people have to be honest with their family members and make it clear that there is just no money for gifts this year. I can see her buying gifts for her children, but extravagant gift giving to relatives is wrong given the financial situation of this family. Would you have done the same if you were in the same situation? Christmas has lost its meaning in my opinion.

Love swagbucks!

December 20th, 2011 at 01:20 pm

I just go my first free ebook for my NOOK using the giftcards I earned through Swagbucks. I got the last book from the Millenium Trilogy, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson. I love these books and I will be heading out to the movie theater during Christmas break to watch the American version of the trilogy, The Girl With the Dragon Tatoo.

We made it!!!

December 19th, 2011 at 04:23 pm

Yes, today I set up the payment to meet the $30K mortgage principal pay down of 2011!! We are officially down from $243,500 to $213,500 in one year. The principal amount is where it should be in April of 2013. Woo Hoo! I still want to cash in our coin jar, which I'll do next Monday. I'm super excited!
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My DS#1 spring college tuition is paid ($5323.00)and I just have to order D#2 yearbook. The school offers a discount of $15 when students preorder the yearbook. He is a senior and this is the only yearbook I purchased throughout the years.

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My husband and I bought and Iphone 4S for DS#1 for Christmas along with a few other things. DS#2 we'll get cash equal to the same amount of money we spent on his brother. My husband and I do not exchange gifts. We've done this for the 21 years we've been married.

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Christmas break starts Friday and I'll be off until January 2nd. Enjoy the rest of the week.

Home cooked meals

December 11th, 2011 at 02:47 pm

I'm not going to lie, I love eating out, but I limit it to maybe once a week. Eating out is super expensive, although we usually choose to enjoy a good meal at our local pizzeria. We get the most bang for our money and we save on the tip. Lately, I've been calculating how much each dinner meals costs us and I was especially amazed today. I made a large lasagna today (meat,cheddar/mozzarella and ricotta cheese) and the cost was about $9. What's even more amazing is that we still have half of the lasagna leftover for another day. Needless to say, the real cost of today's dinner was about $5. The lasagna was delicious, made with love and care and inexpensive.

P.S. I was happy to use my Christmas dinnerware for the first time today!

Electric bill and weekly goals

December 3rd, 2011 at 10:35 am

We managed to cut down the electric bill from $55.57 to $35.67 last month (billing cycle from Nov. 2nd to the 30th). I think that we managed to keep it low because we do not use our dryer unless we really have to. Any surplus in the budget allotted for bills will automatically go to paying down the mortgage principal. I rounded the amount off to $20. Woo Hoo!

I'm taking advantage of all the gift cards deals out there. I ordered a $25 gift card from Barnes and noble for $15 and also bought vouchers for 5 Big Macs and 5 large fries for $13. I realized that it is not healthy meals but the boys will buy them anyway so why not save some money. I have accumulated a lot of swagbucks. I'm holding out for a deal on B&N gift cards.

Lately, I've been trying to keep on track with things that need to be done during the week. At the beginning of each week, I make a list of things I would like to accomplish. The weekly list seems to help me get everything done. This weeks's list looks like this:

Send 5 Christmas cards each day.
Earn 100 Swagbucks
Read 150 pages of my e-book
Search for deals on the internet
Drink 6-8 glasses of water
Pray for family and friends

Going out to buy some Christmas crafts and baking ingredients. I hope you have a good weekend.